Glendale votes to keep Coyotes

Posted: Updated:
By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Phoenix Coyotes found out they’ll be staying in Glendale for another couple of decades on Friday.

The Glendale City Council approved a 20-year lease agreement with a 4-2 vote that will pay potential team owner Greg Jamison $300 million to manage and operate Arena.

But while many hockey fans in the Valley were pleased with Friday’s vote, the decision did leave some Glendale residents upset that their tax dollars are going towards the Coyotes.

“It’s bringing people into the city. Without the team they probably wouldn’t be coming into the city as much, but then again you have to look at the intangibles, such what they still have left on the loan for the arena,” said Alex Eikosta, who opposed the vote.

Friday’s decision will likely give Jamison’s group the green light to purchase the team. Jamison will still need to work out a final deal with the NHL, and be approved by the league’s board of governors.

Those final details will likely be worked out in the next few weeks.

In the meantime, the Goldwater Institute has announced plans to challenge the deal.  The conservative taxpayer-watchdog group has problems with the way tax dollars are being used under the agreement.  Also, Goldwater attorneys say the City of Glendale did not follow proper public meeting procedures.

Glendale officials said Friday  they are confident they will win if Goldwater takes the new agreement to court.